ArticlePDF Available

Scientific validation of the traditional knowledge of Sikta ("Tabernaemontana sananho", Apocynaceae) in the Canelo-Kichwa Amazonian community

Authors:

Abstract and Figures

Tabernaemontana sananho is a tree member of the Apocynaceae family referred to as sikta in Kichwa language. It is widely used in northern South America as painkiller, stimulant, antiseptic and is also highly valued as a sacred plant. In this work, we report the traditional knowledge and uses of sikta by the scarcely contacted Kichwa community of Pakayaku (Pastaza province, Ecuador) and further provide a scientific framework for its scientific validation. A review of the available literature revealed the presence of a wealth of biologically active indole alkaloids that potentially account for the great number of medicinal uses of sikta. This case study is illustrative of the importance of scientific validation of traditional knowledge (i) for indigenous communities —as empowering tool—, (ii) for the sake of scientific knowledge and (iii) for plant conservation.
Content may be subject to copyright.
183Mediterranean Botany 39(2) 2018: 183-191
Mediterranean Botany
ISSNe 2603-9109
http://dx.doi.org/10.5209/MBOT.60073
Scientic validation of the traditional knowledge of Sikta (Tabernaemontana
sananho, Apocynaceae) in the Canelo-Kichwa Amazonian community
Carmen X. Luzuriaga-Quichimbo1, Trinidad Ruiz-Téllez2, José Blanco-Salas2 & Carlos E. Cerón Martínez3
Received: 2 November 2017 / Accepted: 20 February 2018 / Published online: 29 june 2018
Abstract. Tabernaemontana sananho is a tree member of the Apocynaceae family referred to as sikta in Kichwa language.
It is widely used in northern South America as painkiller, stimulant, antiseptic and is also highly valued as a sacred plant. In
this work, we report the traditional knowledge and uses of sikta by the scarcely contacted Kichwa community of Pakayaku
(Pastaza province, Ecuador) and further provide a scientic framework for its scientic validation. A review of the available
literature revealed the presence of a wealth of biologically active indole alkaloids that potentially account for the great
number of medicinal uses of sikta. This case study is illustrative of the importance of scientic validation of traditional
knowledge (i) for indigenous communities —as empowering tool—, (ii) for the sake of scientic knowledge and (iii) for
plant conservation.
Keywords: Tabernaemontana; Ecuador; Pastaza; plant uses; indole alkaloids; analgesic; psychotropic.
Validación del conocimiento tradicional de la sikta (Tabernaemontana sananho, Apocynaceae)
en una comunidad canelo-kichwa amazónica
Resumen: Tabernaemontana sananho Ruiz & Pav. (Apocynaceae), es una planta utilizada en el norte de América del Sur,
altamente valorada como sagrada, enigmática y medicinal. El objetivo de este trabajo es evaluar el conocimiento tradicional
rescatado en una comunidad kichwa de la provincia de Pastaza (Ecuador) apenas contactada e investigar el conocimiento
cientíco sobre esta especie. Describimos su uso, documentamos prácticas ancestrales que se mantienen vigentes y
favorecen su conservación. Validamos muchas aplicaciones en base a publicaciones de estudios experimentales de sus
alcaloides indólicos y actividad farmacológica. Este caso práctico enfatiza la importancia de sistematizar cientícamente el
conocimiento tradicional para reforzar el valor de la Biodiversidad y la Conservación.
Palabras clave: Tabernaemontana; Ecuador; Pastaza; usos; alcaloides indólicos; analgésico; psicótropo.
1 Centro de Investigación Biomédicas – CENBIO, Universidad Tecnológica Equinoccial. 170147 Quito (Ecuador).
2 Grupo de Investigación en Biología de la Conservación, Facultad de Ciencias, Universidad de Extremadura. Av. de Elvas, s/n. E-06071 Badajoz
(España). E-mail: blanco_salas@unex.es
3 Herbario Alfredo Paredes (QAP), Universidad Central del Ecuador. 17012177 Quito (Ecuador).
ARTICLES
Introduction
Traditional indigenous knowledge has been often
disregarded as unscientic due to its alleged insufcient
repeatability, inability to provide data for quantitative
analysis and intrinsic lack of tools to measure condence
(Ragupathy & Newmaster, 2009). As a result, indigenous
communities have been often sidelined in the political
decision-making process, alienating its members from
the management of natural resources within their own
traditional realms. Studies that validate traditional
indigenous knowledge are therefore necessary as tools
to empower indigenous peoples, to incorporate their
knowledge to the mainstream scientic system and
provide a framework for sustainable natural resource
management (Gratani & al., 2011).
Despite the lack of recognition of traditional
indigenous knowledge, an increasing body of research
is raising its credibility through scientic studies.
Validation of indigenous knowledge can use quantitative
(Ragupathy & Newmaster, 2009), qualitative (Fassil,
2003) or both methods (Macía, 2004). In this study, we
present a qualitative contribution to the validation of
traditional knowledge in a scarcely contacted Canelo-
Kichwa Amazonian community in Pastaza, Ecuador, of
Tabernaemontana sananho Ruiz & Pav. (Apocynaceae),
referred to as sikta in Kichwa (Quechua) language.
Sikta is a highly symbolic plant species widely used in
northern South America as a medicinal drug.
Sikta is a widespread small tree in the understory layer
of the lowland evergreen rainforests across northern South
America, from the Brazilian Amazon basin to Panama
including Colombia, Ecuador, the Guianas, Peru, Surinam
and Venezuela. Within Ecuador, it is cited in the provinces
of Napo, Orellana, Pastaza, Morona-Santiago, Zamora-
Chinchipe, the northern Sucumbíos, Carchi and Esmeraldas,
184 X. Luzuriaga-Quichimbo, C.; Ruiz-Téllez, T.; Blanco-Salas, J.; Cerón Martínez, C. E. Mediterranean Botany 39(2) 2018: 183-191
so it is mostly distributed over the Noroccidental province
of the Amazonian biogeographical Region; this species
shares its habitat with abundant and diverse Eschweilera
(Lecythidaceae), Iryanthera (Myristicaceae) and Protium
(Burseraceae) tree species (Borgtoft & al., 1998; Anon.,
2012; Tropicos.org; Globalbioclimatics.org).
They are shrub-like small trees, repeatedly dichoto-
mously branched, with l-2 pedunculate inorescences in
the forks. Their leaves are opposite, petiolate or less often
sessile, those of a pair being equal or subequal, thick and
coriaceous. They have pentamerous sympetalous white
owers; corolla lobes overlapping to the left; anthers
mostly narrowly triangular, partly sterile; ovary with two
open sincarpic carpels, subglobose at fructication, with a
mostly eshy, often thick wall and two narrow ridges; and
fruits with many ellipsoid seeds deeply grooved on one
side. The species was rstly described in Peru by Ruiz &
Pavón (1798-1802; Plantillustrations.org; Figure 1). The
interest of this tree resides in its use as a multipurpose
remedy and symbolic plant that is “only recognized by
selected persons from ancestral cultures” (Van Beer & al.,
1984).
Figure. 1. Illustration of T. sananho Ruiz & Pavón (1798-1802) (http://www.plantillustrations.org).
185X. Luzuriaga-Quichimbo, C.; Ruiz-Téllez, T.; Blanco-Salas, J.; Cerón Martínez, C. E. Mediterranean Botany 39(2) 2018: 183-191
The sikta tree produces a number of biologically active
substances as byproducts of its secondary metabolism.
Most of them belong to the chemical family of the indole
alkaloids (Van Beer & al., 1984), substances whose effect
is known since early times in history and that have proved
highly valuable in western medicine (Monachino, 1954).
Sikta is reported to act as a stimulant, be used as cure-
all and bears a high symbolic value, as many indigenous
peoples consider it sacred (for a summary of previously
reported uses see Appendix 1). In Colombia it has been
used to cure eye wounds, while in Brazil, a concoction
of the roots is used against rheumatic pains (Van Beer &
al., 1984). Leaves are used against syphilis, fever, and
as a heart tonic. Roots allegedly work against abscesses,
skin pathologies and colds, while the bark is employed
as a contraceptive and painkiller plus as a stimulant for
hunting dogs. A wide array of indigenous peoples uses
the sikta tree, among them, to cite some examples, the
Aguaruna of Peru (Brack Egg, 1999) and the Awa, Cofan,
Secoya, Shuar, Wao or Kichwa from Ecuador (De la Torre
& al., 2008; Luzuriaga, 2017), where sikta is in addition
regarded as a highly valued sacred plant.
The Kichwa community of Pakayaku (Bobonaza
river, Pastaza, Ecuador) includes approximately one
thousand inhabitants widely spread over their ancestral
territory, where they live in open wood cottages scattered
through the forest. The community makes contact with
the rest of the country only occasionally by radio or by
rafting the river Bobonaza for ve hours to the closest
village connected by road (Canelos). Pakayaku lacks
electric supply, medical attention, running water and
sewage network, and therefore also TV, connection to the
Internet or mobile phones. Labor division in Pakayaku is
based on sex: men work as hunters and warriors, and fell
trees to open a forest clearing or chakra where women
later cultivate the land and prepare the staple food, the
yucca. The children learn Spanish at an elementary
school, while the elderly speak only Kichwa. School
absenteeism is unfortunately rife.
This study aims to report the traditional knowledge
and uses of sikta by the Pakayaku community and lay a
framework for its scientic validation, with the objective
of incorporating the indigenous knowledge to the global
scientic network, raising the awareness of the non-
indigenous peoples and legitimate the traditional uses of
the sikta on the basis of scientic evidence.
Materials and Methods
Study area and voucher collection
The Kichwa community of Pakayaku (Bobonaza River,
Pastaza, Ecuador) lies in a fairly isolated region where
bio- and ethnodiversity studies are still lacking. One
of us (CXLQ) was based in the Biological Station
Pindo Mirador in the northern Bobonaza river basin
(1º27’09’’S-78º04’51’’W), and since 2008 in charge
of environmental monitoring and education programs
involving the local population (Figure 2).
Figure. 2. Location of the study area. The Ecuadorian province of Pastaza is highlighted.
186 X. Luzuriaga-Quichimbo, C.; Ruiz-Téllez, T.; Blanco-Salas, J.; Cerón Martínez, C. E. Mediterranean Botany 39(2) 2018: 183-191
Plant collection permits were granted by the Ministry
of the Environment. Plant vouchers were deposited at
the QAP Herbarium (Quito, Ecuador): Tabernaemontana
sananho Ruiz & Pavón. EC: Pastaza, Pakayaku, sector
of Aychatambo, 425 m, lowland evergreen forest, 28
November 2015, C. X. Luzuriaga-Q & L. Gayas (QAP
92980). Herbarium José Alfredo Paredes, Universidad
Central de Ecuador, Quito. Identication was revised by
C. Cerón.
Ethnobotanical survey
Collective written research consent was granted by
Mrs. Luzmila Gayas, community president of the
Asembly of Pakayaku. Prior oral individual consent was
obtained from the persons taking part in our survey. Our
investigation consisted of a series of planned house visits
and walking routes accompanied by Kichwa interpreters
and local inhabitants of Pakayaku. Interviews were semi-
structured and included a series of open questions aimed
to encourage discussion. All interviews were recorded.
Two knowledgeable elders of the Pakayaku community
(hereafter n1, n2), acted as informants and agreed to
reveal their wisdom of the sikta tree. The informants
answered freely about several topics, namely Kichwa
common name, part of the plant used, description of
use, harvest season, storage (if any), concoction and
treatment target. After the eld wok, data were included
into an MS Excel spreadsheet. All recorded uses were
referred to the classication proposed by Luzuriaga
(2017), which is itself based upon De la Torre & al.
(2008). The data provided by the community were
compared with the existing ethnobotanical literature
from Ecuador and summarized in Appendix 1, while a
summary of recorded uses in Pakayaku is provided in
Appendix 2, following the classication of Pardo de
Santayana & al. (2014).
A bibliographic study was performed to provide
scientic evidence for the medicinal uses of the plant.
Results and Discussion
Our survey recorded twelve uses of sikta tree. Most of
them involve the use of the plant or plant drug as an
ethno-medicine to treat a series of conditions in human
patients, but other uses such as to deliver strength and
as a stimulant for hunting dogs were also recorded.
A list of plant drugs, uses and preparation by ethno-
pharmacological techniques is provided in Appendix 2.
The capacity to improve dog hunting skills is of
particular interest. To our knowledge, this is the rst
report for Kichwa peoples of the Bobonaza river basin.
Similar uses are reported from the Awaruna in Peru, an
indigenous group sharing a Shuar common ancestry
with the Kichwas (Luzuriaga, 2017).
Sikta trees are considered sacred by the Kichwas.
The trees bear high symbolic meaning and are regarded
as a bridge that links the person with the hidden forces of
Nature. This high symbolic meaning attributed to sikta
is also reected in the fact that trees are not felled by
the men when clearing the forest. Moreover, the location
of the individual sikta trees used by the initiated adults
is kept under secret. To our knowledge, this is the rst
time such an elevated cultural status is attributed to a
Tabernaemontana species among the Kichwa peoples.
We documented rituals aimed to cleanse the body
and soul of evil spirits. These treatments and rituals are
conducted by an informed person who prescribes a series
of indications that the patient must observe to eventually
recover health. Most requirements involve strict fasting,
with later controlled intake of a certain food such as
roasted banana prepared without any salt or peppers.
Fasting can endure from two weeks to three months.
The high symbolic status of sikta in the Kichwa
community contrasts with the more mundane uses of
Tabernaemontana reported for other native peoples of
the northern Amazon basin (summarized in Appendix 1).
The Cofan, Awa, Secoya, Wao, and Shuar of the northern
provinces of Ecuador principally use the plant as a sedative,
vulnerary and tonic, or as a stimulant and hallucinogenic
brew in concoction with species of Osteophloeum
(Myristicaceae) and Brugmansia (Solanaceae). Other uses
such as animal feeding and as building material are also
reported. Anti-parasitic activity is reported in the literature
but was not recorded in our survey.
Ethno-medicinal preparations vary in their formulation
across indigenous communities. Plant drugs employed
change from one community to another as well. For
instance, while the Canelo-Kichwa community of
Pakayaku employs sikta roots for digestive or respiratory
conditions, the Kichwas of Orellana use sikta bark or
leaves to treat colds. Similarly, the Canelo-Kichwa people
of Pakayaku use sikta leaves as vulnerary in post-delivery
bleeding while the Kichwas of Napo employ sikta latex for
the same purpose.
Towards a validation of sikta traditional uses
T. sananho is reported to be rich in indole alkaloids
(Van Beer & al., 1984), among them coronaridine,
3-hydroxycoronaridine, (-)-heyneanine, (-)-ibogamine
and voacangine, the latter being coronaridine derivatives
with iboga-type basic skeleton (Figure 3). More recently,
Rohini & Mahesh (2015) isolated the alkaloids TS1 and
TS2 from leave extracts, with ervatamine iboga-type
and monoterpene (metoxy) indole miscelaneous group
basic skeletons, respectively (Figure 4).
A series of contributions report biological activity that
can potentially explain the widespread uses of sikta by
indigenous peoples across the northern Amazon basin to
treat a wide range of conditions (Appendix 1). Van Beer
& al. (1984) and references therein reported coronaridine
activity on the autonomous and central nervous systems
as a painkiller and respiratory depressant, as well as
estrogenic activity that could account for the use of sikta
as a contraceptive. 3-hydroxycoronaridine is reported to
show antibiotic activity, while ibogamine is apparently
a powerful stimulant of the central nervous system.
Voacangine exhibited a slight central nervous stimulant
effect.
published online
187X. Luzuriaga-Quichimbo, C.; Ruiz-Téllez, T.; Blanco-Salas, J.; Cerón Martínez, C. E. Mediterranean Botany 39(2) 2018: 183-191
N
H
N
H
CH
2
CH
3
H
O
H
3
CO
Coronaridine
N
H
N
H
CH
2
CH
3
H
O
H
3
CO
3-Hydroxycoronaridine
OH
H
N
H
N
H
H
O
H
3
CO
Heyneanine
H
CH
3
OH
N
H
N
H
CH
2
CH
3
H
Ibogamine
H
N
H
N
H
CH
2
CH
3
H
O
H
3
CO
H
3
CO
Voacangine
Figure. 3. Coronaridine, the iboga-type basic skeleton for 3-hidroxycoronaridine, (-)-heyneanine,
(-)-ibogamine and voacangine alkaloids.
TS1
H
3CO
N
CH3
CH3
H3COOC
H3C
H
TS2
N
H
3
CO
NH
O
O
Figure. 4. TS1 (ervatamine subtype) and TS2 (monoterpene (metoxy) subtype) alkaloids described
by Rohini & Mahesh (2015).
Regarding other species of Tabernaemontana, Rizo
& al. (2013) found promising antitumoral activity in
coronaridine and heyneanine from T. catharinensis.
Rohini & Mahesh (2015) obtained successful results
when evaluating the anti-inammatory and anti-
nociceptive activity of TS1 and TS2. Pratchayasakul
& al. (2008) found that ibogamine from T. divaricata
and ibogaine presented a similar effect. The revision of
Dos Santos & al. (2017) described the anti-addictive
action of these alkaloids, which opens a window for
prospecting their use in drug detoxication programs.
Similar activity for voacangine from T. corymbosa was
reported by Xuan & al. (2006).
Indole alkaloids are reported to possess anti-
inammatory and anti-nociceptive activity (Van Beer & al.
1984). This could account for the relief of abdominal pain
and respiratory conditions attributed to sikta by the Shuar,
Wao, Cofan, and Kichwa peoples. Shuars and Kichwas
brew concoctions of diverse sikta drugs to relief pain due to
muscular and skeletal injury as well as general discomfort.
The combined anti-microbial and anti-parasitic
activity of coronaridide from T. divaricata reported
by Pratchayasakul & al. (2008) and Estevez & al.
(2007) (leishmanicidal activity) could account for the
traditional use of sikta in the treatment of infections,
parasitosis and parasitic diseases, as well as for the use
of sikta concoctions as a birth aid (potential effect on
uterine contractions), as a vulnerary and in the puerperal
hygiene of mother and child.
Bennett & Alarcón (2015) reported that the
administration of stimulant substances to hunting dogs can
enhance their sensory perception and therefore improve
the detection and capture of prey, which opens a window
for use in specialized training programs for police dogs.
The scientic validation of traditional knowledge is an
important step towards the legitimization of indigenous
culture in the global society. It is empowering for the
indigenous people as well as a valuable contribution to
contemporary science and a promotion of environmental
conservation.
Coronaridine 3-Hydroxycoronaridine Heyneanine
Ibogamine
TS1 TS2
Voacangine
published online
188 X. Luzuriaga-Quichimbo, C.; Ruiz-Téllez, T.; Blanco-Salas, J.; Cerón Martínez, C. E. Mediterranean Botany 39(2) 2018: 183-191
Acknowledgements
We are grateful to the members of the Kichwa community
of Pakayaku, Ms. Luzmila Gayas, the People’s Assembly
of Pakayaku and the collaborating ayllus (families),
for their invaluable help and cooperation. F. Centeno
Velázquez, M.V. Gil Álvarez (University of Extremadura),
& P. Escobar García (Naturhistorisches Museum Wien,
Austria) collaborated actively in the improvement of
the original manuscript. This work was funded by the
Government of Extremadura (Spain) and the European
Union through the action “Apoyos a los Planes de
Actuación de los Grupos de Investigación Catalogados de
la Junta de Extremadura: FEDER GR15080”.
References
Anonymous. 2012. Sistema de clasicación de los ecosistemas del Ecuador continental. Subsecr. Patr. Nat. Min. Amb.
Ecuador, Quito.
Bennett, B.C. & Alarcón, R. 2015. Hunting and hallucinogens: The use psychoactive and otherplants to improve the
hunting ability of dogs. J. Ethnopharmacol. 171(2): 171-183.
Borgtoft, H., Skov, F., Fjeldså, J. Schjellerup, I. & Øllgaard, B. 1998. People and Biodiversity. Two case studies from
the Andean foothills of Ecuador. Centre for research on cultural and biological diversity of Andean rainforests. DIVA
Technical Report n. 3, Rønde.
Brack Egg, A. 1999. Diccionario enciclopédico de plantas útiles del Perú. Centro de Estudios Regionales Andinos
Bartolomé de Las Casas, Cuzco.
De la Torre, L., Navarrete, H., Muriel, P., Macía, M.J. & Balslev, H. (Eds.). 2008. Enciclopedia de las Plantas útiles del
Ecuador. Herb. QCA. Esc. Ci. Biol. Ponticia Univ. Cat. Ecuador. Herb. AAU Dep. Ci. Biol. Univ. Aarhus, Quito,
Aarhus.
Dos Santos, R.G., Bouso, J.C. & Hallak, J.E.C. 2017. The antiaddictive effects of ibogaine: A systematic literature review
of human Studies. J. Psyched. Stud. 1(1): 20-28.
Estevez, Y., Castillo, D., Pisango, M.T., Arevalo, J., Rojas, R., Alban, J., Deharo, E., Bourdy, G. & Sauvain, M. 2007.
Evaluation of the leishmanicidal activity of plants used by Peruvian Chayahuita ethnic group. J. Ethnopharmacol.
114(2): 254-259.
Fassil, H. 2003. A Qualitative understanding of local traditional knowledge and medicinal plant use. Indig. Knowl. Not.
52: 1-4.
Gratani, M., Butler, J.R.A., Royee, F., Valentine, P., Burrows, D., Canendo, W.I. & Anderson, A.S. 2011. Is validation of
indigenous ecological knowledge a disrespectful process? A case study of traditional shing poisons and invasive sh
management from the Wet Tropics, Australia. Ecol. Soc. 16(3): 25.
Luzuriaga, C.X. 2017. Estudio Etnobotánico en Comunidades Kichwas Amazónicas de Pastaza, Ecuador. Mem. Doc.
(ined.). Univ. Extremadura.
Macía, M.J. 2004. Multiplicity in palm uses by the Huaorani of Amazonian Ecuador. Bot. J. Linn. Soc. 144: 149-159.
Monachino, J. 1954. Rauvola serpentina: its history, botany and medical use. Econ. Bot. 8: 349-365.
Pardo de Santayana, M., Morales, R., Aceituno-Mata, L. & Molina, M. (Eds.). 2014. Inventario Español de los
Conocimientos Tradicionales Relativos a la Biodiversidad. Primera Fase: Introducción, Metodología y Fichas. Min.
Agric., Alim. Med. Amb., Madrid.
Pratchayasakul, W., Pongchaidecha, A., Chattipakorn, N. & Chattipakorn, S. 2008. Ethnobotany & ethnopharmacology
of Tabernaemontana divaricate. Indian J. Med. Res. 127(4): 317-335.
Ragupathy, S. & Newmaster, S. 2009. Valorizing the ‘Irulas’ traditional knowledge of medicinal plants in the Kodiakkarai
Reserve Forest, India. J. Ethnobiol. Ethnomed. 5: 10.
Rizo, W.F., Ferreira, L.E., Colnaghi, V., Martins, J.S., Franchi, L.P., Takahashi, C.S., Beleboni, R.O., Marins, M., Pereira,
P.S. & Fachin, A.L. 2013. Cytotoxicity and genotoxicity of coronaridine from Tabernaemontana catharinensis A.DC
in a human laryngeal epithelial carcinoma cell line (Hep-2). Genet. Mol. Biol. 36(1): 105-10.
Rohini, R.M. & Mahesh, D. 2015. Evaluation of anti-inammatory and antinociceptive activity and isolation of two new
alkaloids from leaves extract of Tabernaemontana sananho. J. Chem. Pharm. Res. 7(1): 31-36.
Ruiz López, H. & Pavón, J.A. 1798-1802. Flora Peruviana et Chilensis, plates 1-152.
Van Beer, T.A., Verpoortea, R., Baerheim Svendsens, A., Leeuwenberg A.J.M. & Bissetc, N.G. 1984. Tabernaemontana
L. (Apocynaceae): A review of its Taxonomy, Phytochemistry, Ethnobotany and Pharmacology. J. Ethnopharmacol.
10(1): 1-156.
Xuan, W.D., Chen, H.S., Yuan, Z.X., Zhang, X.D. & Huang M. 2006. Antiaddictive Indole Alkaloids in Ervatamia
yunnanensis and their bioactivity. Acad. J. Second Mil. Med. Univ. 27(1): 92-96.
Websites
Globalbioclimatics.org Worldwide Bioclimatic Classication System, 1996-2017, Rivas-Martínez, S. & Rivas-Sáenz, S.,
Phytosociological Research Center, Spain. http://www.globalbioclimatics.org [Accessed 9.01.2018]
Tropicos.org. Missouri Botanical Garden. http://www.tropicos.org [Accessed 24.10.2017]
189X. Luzuriaga-Quichimbo, C.; Ruiz-Téllez, T.; Blanco-Salas, J.; Cerón Martínez, C. E. Mediterranean Botany 39(2) 2018: 183-191
Appendix 1. Synthesis of the ethnobotanical knowledge in T. sananho, from the indigenous communities of Ecuador
based on Van Beer & al. (1984), Brack Egg (1999), De la Torre & al. (2008) and the bibliographic
revision of Luzuriaga (2017).
Discipline Organ/System Part used Formulation Traditional
knowledge
Indigenous
population
Country
or Ecuador province
Medicine Digestive system Bark Cooking of shaved bark Abdominal pain Shuar Morona Santiago
Brew of shaved bark Kichwa Napo, Pastaza
Brew Wao Orellana
Sap Drink with a pinch of salt
Bark and
leaves
Kichwa Napo, Pastaza
Cofán Sucumbíos
Bark Mixed with other herbs Diarrhea Kichwa Napo
Fruit
latex
Latex licked off of fruit Shuar Zamora Chinchipe
Stem Stem is cut Shuar Napo
Intestinal gas Kichwa Napo, Pastaza
Gynecology Root Cooking Postpartum nausea Kichwa Napo
Bark Brew Washing of
“impurities” after
childbirth
Kichwa Napo, Pastaza
Concoction with Petrea
maynensis and Usnea sp.
Contraceptive Kichwa Napo
Contraceptive Awaruna Peru
Latex Purify blood after
birth
Kichwa Napo, Pastaza
Bleeding in
childbirth
Kichwa Napo, Pastaza
Postpartum
abdominal pains
Kichwa Napo, Pastaza
Respiratory system Leaves Boiled with tobacco in a
little water then vapors
inhaled through the nose
Colds Kichwa Orellana
Flu
Bark Brew Shuar Pastaza
Shaved bark in the nose Kichwa Orellana
Latex Shaved bark in the nose
Bark Brew of shaved bark Kichwa Napo, Pastaza
Coughs
Brew taken on an empty
stomach
Kichwa Napo
Root Coughs Awaruna Peru
Clear breathing
system
Kichwa Napo, Pastaza
Musculature and skeleton Bark Brew of the shaved bark Inammations Kichwa Napo, Pastaza
Root Brew Rheumatic pains Brazil
Root
bark,
leaves
Rheumatic pains Awaruna Peru
Root Skin conditions,
abscesses
Awaruna Peru
Ocular system Eye wounds Colombia
Cardiac system Leaves Cardiac tonic Awaruna Peru
Other infectious and parasitic
diseases
Bark,
leaves
Scraped bark is wrapped
in the leaves and left in
water until the next day,
then drunk as emetic
Intestinal parasites Cofán Sucumbíos
Leaves Syphilis Awaruna Peru
Latex Tupe (larvae under
the skin)
Secoya Sucumbíos
Inuenza Kichwa Napo, Pastaza
Wao Orellana
Bark Brew Dysentery Shuar Pastaza
Wao Orellana
190 X. Luzuriaga-Quichimbo, C.; Ruiz-Téllez, T.; Blanco-Salas, J.; Cerón Martínez, C. E. Mediterranean Botany 39(2) 2018: 183-191
Discipline Organ/System Part used Formulation Traditional
knowledge
Indigenous
population
Country
or Ecuador province
Symptoms and states of
undened origin
Fruit
(aryl)
Body fevers Kichwa Napo
Leaves Body fevers Awaruna Peru
Latex Stimulating Shuar Orellana
Body discomfort Cofán Sucumbíos
Other medicinal uses Bark,
leaves
Additive in herbal
preparations
Increase efciency Kichwa Napo
Veterinary Endocrine-metabolic
system
Latex Applied to dogs nose Gain weight Wao Napo
Organ of the senses Bark Ground and applied to
dogs nose
Improve hunting
skills
Shuar Pastaza
Left in water, then
offered to dogs
Kichwa Orellana
Bark Fed to dogs Improve tness Awuaruna Peru
Fruit Sticky juice applied to
dogs nose
Improve smell and
hunting skills
Secoya Sucumbíos
Others Ecuador
Toxic and harmful Poisons, insecticides and
pesticides
Bark Hunting poison Kichwa Napo
Secoya Sucumbíos
Social, symbolic and
rituals uses
Hallucinogenic, narcotic
and smoking
Concoction with
Osteophloeum
platyspermum and
Brugmansia spp.
Hallucinogenic Kichwa Napo
Bark Bark grated, brewed in
cold water and applied to
the nose
Luck and energy for
the hunter
Shuar Pastaza
Leaves Briey cooked in water
and applied
Headache Kichwa Napo
Bark Shaved bark is cooked Sleeping Shuar Morona Santiago
Other Other Edible-
Fruits /
Sweet
fruits
Human consumption
Food
Awa Carchi
Cofán Sucumbíos
Secoya Sucumbíos
Kichwa Napo, Pastaza,
Sucumbíos
Wao Napo, Pastaza,
Orellana
Shuar Pastaza, Morona
Santiago, Zamora
Chinchipe
Not specied Napo, Orellana,
Morona Santiago,
Zamora Chinchipe
Stem sap Non-alcoholic
beverages
Quench thirst
Wao Orellana
Fruit Forage, in particular
birds
Secoya Sucumbíos
Stem Building material
agricultural facilities
Wao Napo
191X. Luzuriaga-Quichimbo, C.; Ruiz-Téllez, T.; Blanco-Salas, J.; Cerón Martínez, C. E. Mediterranean Botany 39(2) 2018: 183-191
Appendix 2. Specic ethnobotanical uses in Pakayaku in Tabernamontana sananho. *Ancestral utilizations, aspects or
facets not previously published. Data procedence: Informants n1 and n2.
Discipline Target Drug Formulation Use
Medicine Digestive system *Root *Root is scraped and brewed in a liter of liquid. It is taken three times a
day for fteen days. Treatment is resumed after a pause.
*Gastritis 1
Conception,
pregnancy, delivery
and puerperium
*Leaves *Root is scraped and brewed in a liter of liquid. The leaves are boiled
in the afternoon and the next day at four in the morning the pregnant
woman is bathed.
Birth 1
Respiratory system *Root *Same procedure as rituals for body cleansing with roots Throat and lung
clearing 1
Cultural diseases *Leaves *Leaves are boiled and the resulting brew is used to bathe the patient at
4:00 a. m.
*Clear evil in the
body 2
*Stem and
leaves
*Patient is spanked with leaves and stems throughout the body *Against bad
spirits 1
Symptoms and states
of undened origin
*Root *Roots of three plant species (“three trees that are well nailed the
root”) are collected and “thin barks are scraped and thrown”. Then left
during the night in an open space (referred to as “enserenar”). The next
morning at four the person takes a glass of the resulting concoction, and
rests during the following day, being only allowed to move once to go
to the bathroom. If not getting better, repeat. At four in the afternoon
a bath in the river is taken, and the next day, the person is required to
fast, eating only roasted banana, without mayto nor any chili or salt.
This diet must be followed for fteen days or more, up to three months
(“well endured three months, our body is getting better”).
Catharsis 1
*Same procedure as for rituals of body cleansing with roots Physical
discomfort 1
*Bark *A concoction of ten plant species, “taking into account the sunrise
and the sunset”. Plant drugs are poured into a pot and covered with
water, then boiled until dry. The resulting mixture is taken on an empty
stomach when returning from work, and before eating chicha. The rst
day a strict diet must be observed, “eat neither pepper nor salt”, but
after that “we de”.
Physical
discomfort 2
Veterinary Sense organ Bark Five bushes are scraped in virgin forest. They are planted to be able to
take power, and nally they are given to the dogs
Stimulation of
hunting dogs 2
Environment Others *Whole plant *This plant is regarded high cultural value “we value it is secret we do
not mistreat; we do nor cut at work we take good care
*Environmental
protection 1
Social, symbolic
and rituals
Hallucinogenic,
narcotic and
smoking
No data Provide strength,
to blow the
“bodoquera” when
men go hunting
into the forest 2
... This area was found to be a paradise for any researcher who wants to understand floral populations and the ecology of populations. This area is rich with many resources (in many cases unknown) worth knowing and exploring [93][94][95]. ...
Article
Full-text available
The Bologna Process and the European Higher Education area require the application of new active methodologies in the classroom that place the student at the center of his or her learning process. In the present work, we analyze the application of a Service-Learning (SL) methodology in the context of a Final Degree Dissertation (FDD) in the degree in Environmental Sciences at the University of Extremadura (Spain). The project deals with an isolated Kichwa community in Ecuador and involves the development of alternative science education materials for the capacitation of in-service science teachers. This paper evaluates how an FDD carried out according to Service-Learning (SL) principles can help in the acquisition of so-called "soft skills" and how these can be focused in the promotion of the sustainable development goal (SDG) knowledge and achievement. To this end, a qualitative study of the experience and a deep evaluation, followed by a final reflection, were carried out. According to the preliminary results, we can conclude that Higher Education should include SDGs in its teaching praxis and could do this successfully using the SL methodology.
... This area was found to be a paradise for any researcher who wants to understand floral populations and the ecology of populations. This area is rich with many resources (in many cases unknown) worth knowing and exploring [86][87][88]. ...
Preprint
Full-text available
The Bologna Process and the European Higher Education area require the application of new active methodologies in the classroom that place the student at the center of his or her learning process. In the present work we analyze the application of a Service-Learning methodology in the context of a Final Degree Dissertation (FDD) in the degree in Environmental Sciences at the University of Extremadura (Spain). The project deals with an isolated Kichwa community in Ecuador and involves the development of alternative science education materials for the capacitation of in-service science teachers. This paper evaluates how an FDD carried out according to self-learning (SL) principles can help in the acquisition of so-called soft skills and how these can be focused in the promotion of the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) knowledge and achievement. To this end, a qualitative study of the experience and a deep evaluation, followed by a final reflection, were carried out. According to the preliminary results, we can conclude that Higher Education should include SDGs in its teaching praxis and could do this successfully using the SL methodology.
... La detección de nuevas plantas medicinales y de principios activos está relacionada con la conservación de territorios con especies, muchas de ellas endémicas, que a veces forman parte de los bosques donde habitan ciertas etnias que las usan en su medicina tradicional (Cunningham, 2001;Luzuriaga-Quichimbo et al., 2018). La distribución de los principios activos además contiene una base genética, puesto que las plantas habitan en pisos bioclimáticos y áreas biogeográficas llevando adosadas determinadas secuencias génicas que originan las enzimas que catalizan las reacciones del metabolismo secundario de las plantas, y que conducen a la presencia de determinados principios activos mayoritarios (Wink, 2003;Zeng et al., 2013;Moore et al., 2014). ...
Article
Full-text available
This work presents a distribution of medicinal plants and active substances from Cajamarca Department (Peru) under a bioclimatic criterion. The results show that 108 medicinal plants are spread among five bioclimatic belts: infratropical, ther motropical, mesotropical, supratropical and orotropical. As a statistical analysis shows (non-metric multidimensional scaling, MDS), most of them are concentrated in the mesotropical belt and a subhumid precipitation range. In addition a canonical correspondence analysis (CCA), using the altitude (m), the thermicity index (It) and annual precipitation (P) as environmental variables, indicates how active substances are also distributed with tendencies of them, showing phenolic substances and essential oils as mesotropical products, and complex alkaloids to the highest It values, while simple alkaloids to the lowest It values. Most of these molecular compounds are generated under the highest values of the subhumid and humid precipitation intervals. This bioclimatic method can led us to find new medicinal plants and active molecules. Resumen: Este trabajo presenta una distribución de plantas medicinales y principios activos en el departamento de Cajamarca (Perú) bajo un criterio bioclimático. Los resultados muestran que 108 plantas medicinales están repartidas entre cinco pisos bioclimáticos: infratropical, termotropical, mesotropical, supratropical y orotropical. Como muestra el análisis estadístico realizado MDS (non-metric multidimensional scaling), la mayoría de plantas se concentra en el piso mesotropical y en el intervalo subhúmedo de precipitaciones. Además, un análisis canónico de correspondencias (CCA), donde intervienen la altitud (h), el índice de termicidad (It) y las precipitaciones anuales (P) como variables ambientales, indica cómo los principios activos también se distribuyen según tendencias de estas, mostrando a los compuestos fenólicos y aceites esenciales como productos mesotropicales, los alcaloides complejos hacia los valores más elevados de It, mientras que los alcaloides simples hacia los más bajos. Asimismo, la mayoría de estos compuestos tienen su óptimo en los valores más elevados del intervalo subhúmedo y el intervalo húmedo de precipitaciones. Este método bioclimático nos puede llevar a encontrar nuevas plantas medicinales y principios activos.
... It is named Pakayaku. One of us (C.X.L.-Q.) was allowed to visit due to the environmental and education programs she has been conducting since 2008 from the Biological Station Pindo Mirador in the northern Bobonaza River The interviews and ethnobotanical protocols were as described previously [41]. Collective written research consent was granted by Ms. Luzmila Gayas, the community president of the Assembly of Pakayaku. ...
Article
Full-text available
In rural areas of Latin America, Hyptis infusions are very popular. Hyptis obtusiflora extends from Mexico throughout Central America to Bolivia and Peru. It has added value in Ecuador where it has been used by different ethnic groups. We aimed to learn about the traditional knowledge of ancient Kichwa cultures about this plant, and to contrast this knowledge with the published information organized in occidental databases. We proposed to use traditional knowledge as a source of innovation for social development. Our specific objectives were to catalogue the uses of H. obtusiflora in the community, to prospect on the bibliography on a possible chemical justification for its medicinal use, to propose new products for development, and to give arguments for biodiversity conservation. An ethnobotanical survey was made and a Prisma 2009 Flow Diagram was then followed for scientific validation. We rescued data that are novel contributions for the ethnobotany at the national level. The catalogued main activity of anti-inflammation can be related to the terpene composition and the inhibition of xanthine oxidase. This opens the possibility of researching the extract of this plant as an alternative to allopurinol or uricosuric drugs. This is a concrete example of an argument for biodiversity conservation.
Article
Full-text available
A Tabernaemontana sananho Ruiz & Pavon (Apocynaceae) é uma planta usada como medicina pelos povos da América Latina com diferentes contextos antropológicos e botânicos. Popularmente conhecida no Brasil como “colírio da floresta” ou “sananga”, tem seu uso expandido das aldeias para centros urbanos. Esse estudo teve por objetivo detalhar a planta sob a perspectiva da medicina indígena e medicina tradicional ocidental, compreendendo os aspectos etnobotânicos, farmacognósicos e farmacológicos. Trata-se de uma revisão de literatura integrativa e qualitativa, com descritor Tabernaemontana sananho, nas línguas: português, espanhol e inglês, nas bases de dados PUBMED, LILACS e Portal de Periódicos da CAPES. Convergências plausíveis entre atribuições da planta para determinadas situações foram encontradas no sentido nociceptivo, anti-inflamatório, em parte antimicrobiano e no estado de vigília. Algumas propriedades descritas relacionam-se aos alcaloides indólicos monoterpenoides. Os achados sugerem necessidade de mais pesquisas com o extrato da planta quanto a averiguação de propriedades e uso racional da sananga por conter alcaloide de caráter irritante.
Article
The novel discoveries of biologically active compounds from medicinal plants have driven various research fields toward establishing essential sources of natural drug candidates. Tabernaemontana ventricosa Hochst. ex A. DC. (Apocynaceae) is a medicinal plant often used to palliate fever, treat wounds, and reduce blood pressure. The present study aimed to examine the organoleptic characters, elemental composition, phytochemical compounds and evaluate the antibacterial activity of the crude leaf, stem, and latex extracts of T. ventricosa. The microscopic analyses of the organoleptic characters, fluorescence analysis, and elemental composition revealed no harmful compounds. Qualitative phytochemical screening of the extracts detected alkaloids, flavonoids, saponins, sterols, steroids, phenols, fats, fixed oils, carbohydrates, and amino acids. These results correspond to the significant chemical classes observed within Tabernaemontana. The chemical composition of the crude leaf and stem, and latex extracts determined by Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry (GC–MS) analysis showed alkaloids, terpenes, phytosterols, and fatty alcohols. Major identified compounds (>1%) in all extracts were α-linolenic acid, pentadecanoic acid, α-d-mannofuranoside, methyl, 13-docosenamide, (Z)-, 9,12-octadecadienoic acid (Z, Z)-, lup-20(29)-en-3-ol, acetate, (3β), 9,19-cyclolanost-24-en-3-ol, (3β) and β-amyrin. These compounds possess pharmacological effects such as antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, and anticancer properties. The antibacterial activity was evaluated using various extracts, with different concentrations against gram-positive and gram-negative bacterial strains. Substantial antibacterial activity of the methanolic extracts of the leaf and stem and latex extracts were observed against Bacillus subtilis (ATCC 6653), Escherichia coli (ATCC 25922), Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) (ATCC 43300), Staphylococcus aureus (ATCC 29213), and Pseudomonas aeruginosa (ATCC 27853) respectively. Leaf and stem hexane extracts showed considerable activity against B. subtilis and MRSA. Conversely, E. coli, MRSA, S. aureus, and P. aeruginosa displayed resistance or minimal activity at relatively low concentrations. These results suggest that the extracts of T. ventricosa have a substantial antibacterial activity that justifies their use in traditional medicine. Further studies should be considered to establish the full pharmacological potential of this species.
Article
The medicinal plant diet is a healing process used in traditional Amazonian medicine (TAM), and it is poorly described within the scientific literature. This work analyzes the experience of seven participants in this therapy performed at the Takiwasi Center in Peru. Semistructured interviews were performed before and after treatment, documenting participants’ motivation, psychological experience, and perceived personal changes (physically, psychologically, socially, and spiritually), as well as the role played by each medicinal plant. All the interviews were recorded, transcribed, and analyzed using interpretative phenomenological analysis. Reasons to participate in the plant diet included self-discovery, personal development, interest in plant medicine, and professional realization. The experience was perceived as intense and allowed participants to experience self-acceptance, self-discovery, mental balance, rest, cleansing, and connection with nature. Three months after the experience, participants felt physical changes (n = 6), psychological changes (n = 7), social changes (n = 5), and spiritual changes (n = 5).
Article
Full-text available
Background and aims: Ibogaine is a naturally occurring hallucinogenic alkaloid with a therapeutic potential for reducing drug craving and withdrawal. To the best of our knowledge, no systematic review was previously performed assessing these effects. Thus, we conducted a systematic literature review of human studies assessing the antiaddictive effects of ibogaine. Methods: Papers published up to July 2, 2016 were included from PubMed, LILACS, and SciELO databases following a comprehensive search strategy and a pre-determined set of criteria for article selection. Results: Two hundred and fifty-nine studies were identified, of which eight met the established criteria. Seven studies were open-label case series with ibogaine and one study was a randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trial with noribogaine. Case series suggest that a single dose or a few treatments with ibogaine may significantly reduce drug withdrawal, craving, and self-administration in dependent individuals lasting from 24 h to weeks or months. No significant effects of noribogaine on opiate/opioid withdrawal were observed in the clinical trial. Conclusions: Considering the necessity of new drugs that may produce fast-acting and sustained effects in opiate/opioid and cocaine dependence, the potential beneficial effects of ibogaine/noribogaine should be further investigated in controlled trials.
Book
Full-text available
La gran diversidad de la flora ecuatoriana ha sido reconocida y estudiada desde hace mucho tiempo. En este mismo sentido, el alto endemismo de la flora del Ecuador se reconoció desde el siglo XIX, pero no fue sino hasta el año 2000 cuando se publicó el Libro Rojo de las Plantas Vasculares del Ecuador. Finalmente y de manera similar, la flora de este país ha sido desde siempre reconocida por ser inmensamente rica en plantas útiles; evidencias de esto se tienen en las crónicas de los misioneros que acompañaban a los conquistadores donde se hacía referencia al uso que daban los indígenas a las plan- tas que crecían en estos territorios. Posteriormente, han aparecido cientos de publicaciones provenientes de todos los rincones del país. Pero como ha sucedido con otros aspectos de la flora ecuatoriana, nadie en realidad conocía qué tan grande era la proporción de especies útiles en relación a la flora total; menos aun se sabía cuáles eran utilizadas con más de un propósito o quién poseía la información sobre estos usos. Estas preguntas e inquietudes han permanecido con nosotros durante varios años, de forma que cuando hubo la posibilidad de responderlas, se hizo urgente iniciar un proyecto para documentar la diversidad de plantas útiles del Ecuador. El resultados de casi cinco años de trabajo se plasma en esta obra que recopila información sobre los usos de más de 5000 especies de plantas ecuatorianas.
Article
Full-text available
Cultures throughout the world give plants to their dogs in order to improve hunting success. These practices are best developed in lowland Ecuador and Peru. There is no experimental evidence for the efficacy of these practices nor critical reviews that consider possible pharmacological effects on dogs based on the chemistry of the ethnoverterinary plants. This review has three specific aims: 1. Determine what plants the Ecuadorian Shuar and Quichua give to dogs to improve their hunting abilities, 2. Determine what plants other cultures give to dogs for the same purpose, and 3. Assess the possible pharmacological basis for the use of these plants, particularly the psychoactive ones? We gathered Shuar (Province of Morona-Santaigo) and Quichua (Napo and Orellano Provinces) data from our previous publications and field notes. All specimens were vouchered and deposited in QCNE with duplicates sent to NY and MO. Data presented from other cultures derived from published studies on ethnoveterinary medicine. Species names were updated, when necessary, and family assignments follow APG III (Angiosperm Phylogeny Group 2009). Chemical data were found using PubMed and SciFinder. The Shuar and Quichua of Ecuador use at least 22 species for ethnoveterinary purposes, including all but one of their principal hallucinogens. Literature surveys identified 43 species used in other cultures to improve hunting ability. No published studies have examined the pharmacological active of these plant species in dogs. We, thus, combined phytochemical data with the ethnobotanical reports of each plant and then classified each species into a likely pharmacological category: depuratives/deodorant, olfactory sensitizer, ophthalmic, or psychoactive. The use of psychoactive substances to improve a dog's hunting ability seems counterintuitive, yet its prevalence suggests that it is both adaptive and that it has an underlying pharmacological explanation. We hypothesize that hallucinogenic plants alter perception in hunting dogs by diminishing extraneous signals and by enhancing sensory perception (most likely olfaction) that is directly involved in the detection and capture of game. If this is true, plant substances also might enhance the ability of dogs to detect explosives, drugs, human remains, or other targets for which they are valued. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.
Article
Full-text available
Despite the growing recognition of the contribution that indigenous ecological knowledge (IEK) can make to contemporary 'western' science-based natural resource management (NRM), integration of the two knowledge systems has not reached its full potential in Australia. One explanation is that there is an implicit requirement for IEK to be validated by western scientific knowledge (SK), which has stalled its application and perpetuated the primacy of SK over IEK. Consequently, there is little experience of IEK validation, indigenous peoples' perspectives of the process, and no formal frameworks to achieve mutual and equitable validation of both IEK and SK. In this paper we assess the opportunities and limitations of validation processes using a case study of traditional fishing poisons for invasive fish management in the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area of Australia. The study was conducted within a coresearch approach between the Aboriginal holders of the IEK, who are among the paper's authors, and science-based biologists. We jointly carried out scientific laboratory trials that demonstrated that fishing poisons are effective at immobilizing invasive tilapia. Retrospective interviews with indigenous coresearchers showed that they did not find the experience of validation disrespectful, but instead empowering and necessary for their IEK to be understood and appreciated by scientists and included in NRM. Based on our experiences and knowledge of socialization theory we present a framework for the potential future design of collaborative validation processes to facilitate the integration of IEK into mainstream NRM, and the acceptance of SK within indigenous communities in Australia.
Article
Full-text available
Cancer has become a major public health problem worldwide and the number of deaths due to this disease is increasing almost exponentially. In the constant search for new treatments, natural products of plant origin have provided a variety of new compounds to be explored as antitumor agents. Tabernaemontana catharinensis is a medicinal plant that produces alkaloids with expressive antitumor activity, such as heyneanine, coronaridine and voacangine. The aim of present study was firstly to screen the cytotoxic activity of the indole alkaloids heyneanine, coronaridine and voacangine against HeLa (human cervix tumor), 3T3 (normal mouse embryo fibroblasts), Hep-2 (human laryngeal epithelial carcinoma) and B-16 (murine skin) cell lines by MTT (3-(4,5-dimethylthiazol-2-yl)-2,5-diphenyltetrazolium bromide); and secondly to analyze the apoptotic activity, cell membrane damage and genotoxicity of the compound that showed the best cytotoxic activity against the tumor cell lines tested. Coronaridine was the one that exhibited greater cytotoxic activity in the laryngeal carcinoma cell line Hep-2 (IC50 = 54.47 μg/mL) than the other alkaloids tested (voacangine IC50 = 159.33 g/mL, and heyneanine IC50 = 689.45 μg/mL). Coronaridine induced apoptosis in cell lines 3T3 and Hep-2, even at high concentrations. The evaluation of genotoxicity by comet assay showed further that coronaridine caused minimal DNA damage in the Hep-2 tumor cell line, and the LDH test showed that it did not affect the plasma membrane. These results suggest that further investigation of coronaridine as an antitumor agent has merit.
Article
Full-text available
An ethnobotanical study of the palms used by the Huaorani in the Yasuní National Park and Huaorani Ethnic Reserve in Amazonian Ecuador was carried out. In this inventory, 37 palm species were found; all were used by the Huaoranis. One hundred and ninety-one different uses were recorded in eight ethnobotanical categories. Most spe-cies (64.9%) were used for house construction and human food. More than half of the species were used for domestic utensils (59.4%) and hunting and fishing implements (54%). A comparison is made between these data and past stud-ies for the other six indigenous communities from Amazonian Ecuador. This paper shows the highest diversity of use-ful palm species and the highest number of different uses ever recorded for an indigenous group in Amazonian Ecuador. The data combine quantitative and qualitative approaches.
Article
Full-text available
A mounting body of critical research is raising the credibility of Traditional Knowledge (TK) in scientific studies. These studies have gained credibility because their claims are supported by methods that are repeatable and provide data for quantitative analyses that can be used to assess confidence in the results. The theoretical importance of our study is to test consensus (reliability/replicable) of TK within one ancient culture; the Irulas of the Kodiakkarai Reserve Forest (KRF), India. We calculated relative frequency (RF) and consensus factor (Fic) of TK from 120 Irulas informants knowledgeable of medicinal plants. Our research indicates a high consensus of the Irulas TK concerning medicinal plants. The Irulas revealed a diversity of plants that have medicinal and nutritional utility in their culture and specific ethnotaxa used to treat a variety of illnesses and promote general good health in their communities. Throughout history aboriginal people have been the custodians of bio-diversity and have sustained healthy life-styles in an environmentally sustainable manner. However this knowledge has not been transferred to modern society. We suggest this may be due to the asymmetry between scientific and TK, which demands a new approach that considers the assemblage of TK and scientific knowledge. A greater understanding of TK is beginning to emerge based on our research with both the Irulas and Malasars; they believe that a healthy lifestyle is founded on a healthy environment. These aboriginal groups chose to share this knowledge with society-at-large in order to promote a global lifestyle of health and environmental sustainability.
Article
Objective: To investigate the constituents of indole alkaloids in Ervatamia yunnanensis and their antiaddictive bioactivities. Methods: The preliminary alkaloids (TEYA) were extracted by 95 % EtOH from the stems of Ervatamia yunnanensis. TEYA was then purified by silica gel and Sephadex LH20 column chromatography repeatedly and its structure was identified with spectral analysis. The antiaddictive effects of these indole alkaloids were evaluated by Conditioned Place Preference (CPP) experiments. Results: Nine indole alkaloids were obtained and identified as: coronaridine (1) , voacangine (2), 3-R-ethoxycoronaridine (3), 3-S-ethoxycoronaridine (4), 19-epi-heyneanine (5), heyneanine (6), 19-epi-voacristine (7), coronaridine hydroxyindolenine (8) and 12-methoxyl-voaphylline (9). Among them voacangine (2) and 19-epi-voacristine (7) were effective in prevention and treatment of addiction induced by morphine in rats (n=8). Conclusion: Compounds 3, 4, 8, and 9 have been isolated from Ervatamia yunnanensis for the first time and coronaridine-type indole alkaloids are the main antiaddictive constituents of E. yunnanensis.
Article
This small shrub, native to the Orient from India to Sumatra, has for centuries been used in Indian medicine. In 1952 reserpine, one of several alkaloids in the plant, was isolated from its root and has since been evaluated in western medicine as one of the most valuable druǵs for treatinǵ hiǵh blood pressure.